Araqchi in China to Review JCPOA Meeting’s Agenda
EghtesadOnline: Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi who has traveled to Beijing is set to hold a session with top Chinese diplomats on Sunday to discuss the agenda for the upcoming meeting of the 2015 nuclear deal's Joint Commission.
"It was essential to review the agenda of this meeting with our counterparts in the Chinese Foreign Ministry before the meeting to bring our stances closer," he told reporters upon arrival, IRNA reported.
The Joint Commission is a forum where the signatories can discuss problems regarding the implementation of the nuclear deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
A meeting of the commission has been scheduled for Dec. 6 in Vienna, Austria, to discuss how to salvage the agreement that has been fraying ever since the United States unilaterally pulled out last year and reimposed severe sanctions on Tehran, forcing the country to eventually take reciprocal steps by scaling back its commitments, according to Financial Tribune.
Araqchi noted that JCPOA is not in a good condition because the remaining parties have not fulfilled their commitments after the US exit and Iran is no longer enjoying the benefits of the deal.
European parties pledged to shield Iran against US sanctions and took several steps along this line, but none of their initiatives has helped revive the Iranian economy.
Iran is exceeding the limits set in JCPOA step by step, in response to the American pressure and the European incapability to make up for it.
The measures, aimed at inducing European countries to take more practical steps, are immediately reversible once Iran's concerns are addressed.
Nevertheless, Europe has been threatening to trigger JCPOA's dispute resolution mechanism, which could end in the United Nations Security Council with a so-called snapback of global sanctions on Tehran.
Engagement With China, Russia
Araqchi said that after the start of Iran's gradual reduction of its compliance, this agreement’s condition calls for more serious and closer consultations with partners.
He added that the current meeting is part of constant consultations that Iran held with China and Russia over JCPOA after the US withdrawal.
China's Foreign Ministry Spokesman Geng Shuang had earlier expressed concern that the Iranian nuclear issue has entered "a critical stage", stressing that full and effective implementation of JCPOA is the only viable way to ease the tensions.
"We hope this [Joint Commission] meeting will help all parties … explore effective means of implementation, in particular with regards to restoring the balance of rights and obligations of all parties."
Although the current talks with Chinese officials are focused on the nuclear deal, other areas of bilateral ties are also to be discussed.
Iran's trade with partners, including China, have been disturbed due to the American sanctions and threats, but is recovering thanks to diplomatic efforts, according to Araqchi.
"The shocks that our economic relations with our partners received after America's exit from JCPOA have faded away and we now have new mechanisms of trade with our partners, especially China," he said.
Thanks to these new methods, he said, Iran is returning to a stable economic situation in its relations with China, but needs to remove the remaining hurdles and improve mutual trade ties to a higher level.